I’d say it was about as perfect a day as it gets. Sunshine and warmth all day – and the middle of December. At any rate, that’s only one of the reasons I am celebrating. I have so many, I almost can’t count them all. I’ll try to – and do my best not to leave anything out.
First, I put everything into my backpack today – NOT my lumbar pack. And I hiked happily with a full pack all day. No issues! I hiked all day with two poles, only resting my left arm right near the end of the hike – and that was about 5.5 hours! I managed to put some weight on my left arm. I can raise my left arm above my head. I can do so much with my left arm it almost takes me by surprise.
Is it any wonder I am doing the happy dance?
I timed myself from the parking lot at Osborne Bay Road to the top – with pauses for photos etc. it took me exactly as long to reach the top as it did before the accident. I have not slowed down! Oh happy day! I did not get out of breath or tired – I felt fresh and happy at the top. At this rate, I am giving my arm a 75 percent. So very excited, I am – yes, indeed – I am.
And then there was the failure of the best laid plans. I decided I was not going to take the blue trail back and then walk along the road. I have done the blue trail just a few times too often and the thought bored me. So – and this thought excited me – I decided to eat my snack at the top, then walk back quickly along the road. I had forgotten to pack chocolate (my reward when I get back) and therefore was inspired to kill two birds with one – etc. etc. The plan was this: get back to the car, drive to downtown Nanaimo, stop at Cherub Chocolate and get a fabulous dark chocolate bar, wolf it down in pure bliss and then keep driving to Valhalla Pure to pick up my micro spikes.
It was a terrific plan. I blame Abby for alterations. We were about 15 minutes down the road when I heard music and Abby took off in its direction. The music came from a truck. I followed Abby, positive there were some people having a picnic that Abby was about to make off with. Thankfully, their picnic was over and the men and boys just laughed at her efforts to lick clean their discarded food containers. But here’s the kicker, as I chatted with them (while chasing Abby) they told me they were building another trail to the top of the mountain. In fact, they were almost done and the trail from there to the bottom was complete.
“Why don’t you take the trail instead of the road?” one of the men asked.
Well, why not indeed? I love trails. I adore new trails. Abby and I took off. And you know what? It’s a great trail! Of course, it took far longer than the hike down the road and I knew pretty quickly that chocolate and micro spikes were not about to happen today. And that was fine because this trail was warm, sunny and it had great mountain views. I really like this trail! What a piece of luck to run into them – and that Abby is such a thieving brat. So we got home at about 3.30, at which point I ate chocolate and jumped into a hot bubble bath. Really, is there anything better than a bath after a day of hiking?
In the bath, I did all kinds of arm exercises. I am amazed at what I can do – so amazed I am almost inclined to give my arm 80 percent – but let’s not push it: 75 percent it is and that’s reason to celebrate!